Treasure of steppe culture – Abat Baitak mausoleum

12 January 2017
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Famous scientist-turkologist L.N.Gumilyov said, “People of different nations differ not only with their way of life, but also with the attitude to the dead”

We – Kazakhs treat the dead with special respect, before the burial we wash the body. It very ancient ritual. “While the dead are not contented, the live will not be rich”, - the pronounced proverb says.

As a sign of respect we devote them the Suras from the Quran, build the mausoleums. Brave batyrs and great governors – khans, wise bis, singers and poets – all the historical personalities are buried in the grave over which are raised the mausoleums and domes. The example to that is the necropolis of Abat-Baitak.

Architecture building of Abat-Baitak is the burial-cult complex in West Kazakhstan located in 12 km to the south from the settlement of Taldysai Khobdinsky district of Aktobe oblast. The mausoleum was built in late XIV-early XV centuries. On the stone walls in Arabic were written people’s names, their concise biographies, marked the tribe spots.

The burial-cult complex relates to the tent-shaped two-dome architecture constructions. In it are expressed the image of the great century with the unguessed history, all the beauty of steppe culture. The necropolis had 4-corner form with the conic dome. The mausoleum is built from the burnt brick, in inner layers of the setting is applied the layered brick.

The architecture style of necropolis of Abat-Baitak reminds the mausoleums of Khorezm and monuments of late Xii and early XVI centuries Arslan, Tekesh, Kok-Kesene, Kesene”, as it is written in the reference book of Kazakh National Encyclopedia.

On the data, which were taken from the same encyclopedia it is known that the mausoleum of Abat-Baitak is raised in honor of the buried there batyr – son of a famous zhyrau Asan kaigy.

On the legend Abat batyr fighting with enemies died in the valley of Beskop. After batyr’s death for very short time the people built the mausoleum at the place of his death. Because of that to the name was added the epithet “Baitak” (“national”). However, the architecture style of the construction is adherent to the mausoleums of the Khan descendants.

The first mentioning of scientists about the mausoleum of Abat-Baitak relates to the XVIII century and belong to the sub-lieutenant and engineer Rigelman. In his materials, also in the materials of the historian P.I.Rychkov mausoleum is named “Baitan”.

In the 70s of the XX century a historian M.Mendikulov conducted the research works. In 1979-1980 years the expedition of the union “Kazrestoration” under the Ministry of Culture of the Kazakh SSR, the head of which was Serik Azhigaliyev, carried out the research and started the repair-restoration works.

In 2007 the mausoleum of Abat-Baitak was restored on the program “Cultural Heritage” and was taken under the defence of the state.

 

Material was prepared by Altynbek KUMYRZAKULY

Translated by Malika MURSALIM

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